For Immediate Release – September 13, 2023 – (Vancouver, BC)

Sport BC recognizes the importance of volunteers in amateur sport. The significant role volunteers play in their community is celebrated through Sport BC’s Community Sport Hero Awards. The award honours volunteers from Sport BC member and partner organizations who demonstrate the spirit of volunteerism through the years of dedication and commitment they have given to their sport enhancing their local community. The eight recipients will be celebrated during Sport BC’s Community Sport Hero Awards taking place on Thursday, September 14, 2023, in Victoria, BC. Congratulations to the VICTORIA Community Sport Hero Awards Recipients and thank you for all you do for amateur sport in the Greater Victoria area.

Rob Newman, President and CEO of Sport BC says, “I applaud the eight recipients of Sport BC Community Sport Hero Awards, they each believe in the transformative power of sport and are bringing their various skill sets and talents to the amateur sport organizations for which they have volunteered. Volunteering is the backbone of sport in British Columbia and these recipients are inspiring examples of the exceptional people volunteering to deliver amateur sport in the Victoria region.”

SPORT                                            2023 CSHA VICTORIA RECIPIENTS

Triathlon Jacqui & Wayne Coulson
Swimming Jeffrey Stevens
Ringette Laura Tighe
Archery Greg Birtwistle
Rowing York Langerfeld
Ice Hockey Officiating Kirk Van Helvoirt
Figure Skating Kailee Bowman

Jacqui & Wayne Coulson 

For more than 20 years, Jacqui and Wayne Coulson have officiated at community and higher-level events on the Island with Triathlon BC. Jacqui and Wayne do not hesitate to give up their time at many races each year, and they have mentored plenty of new officials and helped countless athletes. The Coulson’s are an encouragement to others entering the sport and inspire volunteerism throughout the Victoria area.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Jeffrey Stevens 

Jeff’s remarkable journey with competitive swimming began over a dozen years ago when his daughters embarked on their developmental swimming journey with Pacific Coast Swimming in 2010. Jeff transitioned from supportive parent to esteemed volunteer, with pivotal roles in event management and leadership positions with Pacific Coast Swimming and Island Swimming Club. His impact as a mentor, official, and educator has left an indelible legacy within the competitive swimming community in Victoria. 


Laura Tighe 

If it wasn’t for Laura’s dedication and perseverance, the Greater Victoria Ringette Association would not exist. Through trials and tribulations, Laura brought a sport to a community that had no previous knowledge of it. She has successfully created opportunities for children, spaces for young adults, and a long-standing association through her dedication to sport. 


Greg Birtwistle 

Greg is not one to seek out recognition but is one who undoubtedly needs to be acknowledged. He is currently the Vice President of the Victoria Bowmen Archery Club. When Greg isn’t volunteering, he can be found building longbows which he often donates for raffles and door prizes. For over 30 years, his passion for archery and his willingness to help wherever he can has impacted many and made him a key person in the sport community. 

York Langerfeld

York’s involvement in the rowing community is difficult to summarize. He’s an Umpire and on the Board for Rowing BC, a volunteer on multiple committees, a Treasurer for the Victoria Rowing Society, and a coach for UVIC’s Women’s Rowing program. He is just as likely to be at his desk hammering out financial statements and he is to be on the water, keeping athletes safe. York is someone the sport community can always count on to get things done so that others can enjoy the sport of rowing.

Kirk Van Helvoirt

Officiating for over 30 years, Kirk has volunteered for most of that time. He’s also been the lead in high performance amateur officiating development on Vancouver Island for around 15 years. He has dedicated thousands of hours of teaching, evaluating, coaching, and leading to hundreds of officials. There is not an official on Vancouver Island over the past decade that has officiated beyond their local arena that has not been impacted by Kirk’s leadership.

Kailee Bowman

Kailee has been the head coach for the Special Olympics BC – Victoria Figure Skating Program, the Head Coach Coordinator, Acting Local Coordinator, and most recently, the Local Coordinator. Throughout all her many roles, Kailee brings forward a positive inclusive mindset to make sure athletes and fellow volunteers are a priority. She has made a remarkable impact on her sport community over the years.


About Sport BC

Sport BC believes in the power of sport and is committed to building stronger communities through positive sport experiences. Our goal is to enhance and support sport participation in British Columbia ensuring everyone has the opportunity to thrive. Through our KidSport BC, BC Amateur Sport Fund, and ProMOTION Plus along with our services Sport BC Insurance, and Payroll and Group Benefits; Sport BC supports our sixty plus member organizations. Keep up to date @SportBC.


Community Sport Hero Awards                       Media Contact

Thursday, September 14, 2023                          Allison Mailer

Coast Victoria Hotel and Marina                       Sport BC, VP Operations


#PoweringSport                                                     778-839-8576